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Information Commons Vision


Supporting McDaniel’s Strategic Plan

The development of an information commons will directly support McDaniel’s Strategic Plan, especially items: 1.5.4 (creative and shared use of technology), 2.1.3 (collaborative student learning) and 2.3.1 (environments that contribute to student learning), as well as other important initiatives by providing:

  • A variety of technology rich collaborative spaces that adapt to students’ changing patterns of learning and innovation.
  • Support for both undergraduate and graduate students through services and workspaces that meet their needs.
  • A central location for the academic development of all disciplines and cross-disciplinary activities.
  • A place to connect students with the information resources and support they need to succeed.

Supporting College Initiatives and Activities

Creative Learning Spaces and the Information Commons are the next logical step in McDaniel’s efforts to support academic achievement and engagement activities.  It will benefit student recruitment, retention, achievement and engagement in the following ways:


  • Contributes to a welcoming community feel for the campus
  • The attractive spaces and innovative designs will demonstrate to new students how McDaniel supports their holistic experience at the college


  • Provides new models for supporting the academic needs of students in convenient locations with a pleasing sense of place (complementary to the Decker Center which is a more social environment)
  • Provides a centralized place for students to get help
  • Attracts students to get help due to positive experiences in an inviting environment

Academic Achievement:

  • Expands choices and opportunities for academic and intellectual experiences
  • Supports non-residential learning activities
  • Creates a culturally supportive environment for exchanging ideas
  • Enables and supports the development of Information Literacy skills
  • Encourages technology skills development


  • Connects students, faculty and staff
  • Encourages active and collaborative learning activities
  • Enriches student experiences by responding to their dynamic and changing needs

Anticipated Outcomes

If the full vision of this project is realized, we anticipate the following outcomes will result:

  1. Increased Enrollment – this innovative space will attract new students, and we will be better able to compete with other schools these incoming students are looking at that have these spaces to offer
  2. Increased Academic Achievement – these learning environments will provide intellectual support to current students, increasing their overall accomplishment
  3. Increased Retention – the focus on academic space design will ground them in their studies at McDaniel in a location where assistance is readily available
  4. Increased Engagement – collaboration will thrive through increased opportunities for faculty, student mentors, peer advisors, or tutors to meet together with students, placing emphasis on peer-to-peer and faculty-student relationships
  5. Increased Giving – this dynamic environment will attract increased donor interest, sustaining the further development of the Information Commons and other creative learning spaces across the campus